30 Effective Habits of Frequent Air Travelers

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Published on March 3, 2020 by Chris

30 things that experienced air travelers do to make their travel easier and less stressful when things go wrong. Learn from the mistakes that other travelers have made and save yourself valuable time and money by practicing these behaviors. You might call these “tips” or “life hacks” — but really, they are just things that frequent fliers do because they work. I’ve traveled a couple million airline miles… and being a huge travel geek I’ve learned these from others at frequent flyer conferences.

1 – Sign up for the airline loyalty programs
And may try to focus on a couple of programs

2 – Use some tool to help track their miles and points

3 – Book the early flight
More on time. Plane is usually there. — more flights if irrops

4 – Consider more than just the cheapest fare
Like on time performance, leg-room, food, service

5 – Generally book direct
Easier to change than if booked with something like Expedia

6 – Plan time for their connections
Considering weather, airport size, international

7 – Sit up front
sit near the back if not in a rush, often more empty seats
Or sit over the wings if you don’t like turbulence

8 – Use seatguru to select their seat

9 – Check the status of their flight the night before, and then again before going to the airport, and check the status of the incoming flight

10 – Use some digital tool to help manage their itineraries
Use gmail? Search “my flight”
And help confirm their itinerary — every few months if booked way out

11 – But also print out the itinerary
Customs and immigration loves to ask for your return ticket, or continuation ticket
You often need your hotel address for the customs card that you fill out on the plane, and don’t have internet access

12 – Always carry a pen

13 – Generally carry-on
Or pack light if checking in
Changes of clothes in your carry-on (at least socks/underwear)
Keep Medicines with you

14 – Pre-flight meds
I take a Claritin D, and an acid reducer
Others like immodium, ibuprofen

15 – Always have their name on their luggage
Pro tip: And in their luggage, with flight info
Extra pro tip: Take a picture of your luggage to help with lost luggage
Hide a few bucks in case your wallet is stolen

16 – Check in on-line
Last person to check-in gets bumped! Better upgrade chance.

17 – Plan for security
No jewelry, electronics easy to get, shoes easy to take off
plastic belt

18 – Check if there is a shorter security line
In the US, sign up for Global Entry or Pre Check

19 – Bring something long sleeved for the plane
A lot of airports and airplanes get really cold
Hoodie if your head gets cold

20 – Carry an empty water bottle

21 – And snacks just in case

22 – Check the flight status again in the airport

23 – And check regularly for updates.. Gate change, etc
Apps for push notifications

24 – Change flights before it’s too late
And not by waiting in the same line everybody else is
Stuck on the plane? Call the airline…
Go out to the ticketing area.
Ask be go through a different airport

25 – Go to the lounge if it’s really bad

26 – Reserve a hotel room if it’s really bad

27 – Board early
Clean their seat when onboard
Carry hand sanitizer

28 – Take it easy on the alcohol

29 – Sleep as much as possible on long flights

30 – Wait to deplane until it’s their turn!

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